Many Transformers come with tech specs (short for technical specifications) printed on the back of the box that they are sold in. The owner of the new Transformer is encouraged to cut out the tech specs and save it. This card has information on the Transformer, and will usually include the character's name, picture, indication of allegiance (Autobot, Decepticon or other), function, a quote, a description of the character, and numerical values of the character's various attributes. Although only the numbers can be truly deemed "technical specifications", the entire card is usually referred to as the Transformer's tech specs. Each specification is rated by a value from 1 to 10, 1 being the lowest, and 10 being the highest.
The figure was released in Japan along with Legends Megatron and Starscream, under the "EZ Collection" banner, in the same packaging as the Hasbro release but with a small card insert featuring the Japanese logo and nomenclature, similar to a USA Edition. As with all the EZ Collection figures, this release features a substantially greater number of paint operations that increase Optimus's resemblance to his larger figure.
He comes with a shield with a fold-out handle, allowing Optimus to hold onto it with either hand in robot mode. It has a simple transformation gimmick for vehicle mode which is activated by pressing a button at the top of the shield, causing the sides to spring outwards. In vehicle mode, the shield can be laid flat across the bed of the truck, attaching via a post on the back onto the truck’s trailer hitch. Alternatively, the bumpers on the shield can be rotated outwards, and the front can be bent down in order to form a new front end and hood for "battle vehicle mode", resembling the Stealth Force vehicle modes seen in Dark of the Moon.
This mold was redecoed in 2000 as Car Robots Black Convoy, and slightly retooled as his US incarnation "Scourge". After Scourge, the next use of this mold was planned to be Toxitron, which ended up being canceled. The slightly retooled version of this mold was released in 2006 in Japan as reissue Battle Convoy, which was the name of this toy during the Japanese Generation 2. The reissue used the Robots in Disguise modified tooling, with a slightly modified deco using silver vacuum-metalized plastic on his chest and trailer sides along with additional paint applications and G2 symbols. The mold was also redecoed to create a new Generation 2 version of Ultra Magnus as an E-Hobby exclusive (unusual in that the character was killed in the course of Japan's Generation One fiction).
Optimus Primal, leader of the Maximal faction in the Beast Wars animated series and toy line, is not Optimus Prime. Primal is one of the Maximal descendants of the Autobots, who took the name to honor Optimus Prime. The same applies to the Megatron of this era. Before the animated series began, Hasbro envisioned Prime and Megatron as their beast counterparts, but once the animated series began, this had already been changed. Design elements, such as Prime's mouth-plate slitted to add an actual mouth for the animated series and the first mini-comic that came packaged with the toys, suggest this. Nonetheless, Optimus Prime and Megatron were a major reason the Beast Wars began.
For many, it may seems that the advent of licensed sets3 correlates with the perceived increase in prices. The 1990s and before were a nostalgic heyday of affordable LEGO sets. This is not quite true. Below is a chart that compares the price per piece of licensed sets and unlicensed sets starting in 1999. 1999 is the first year that LEGO had major licensed themes.
The official international Transformers convention is BotCon, but other fan events include Auto Assembly and TransForce in the UK and past Transformers only events have included BotCon Japan, BotCon Europe and "OTFCC". The first larger Transformers convention in the Nordic countries is called "The NTFA Mini-Con", with official support from Hasbro Nordic, and was held by members of the NTFA - The Nordic TransFans Association, for the first time on November 3–4, 2007. The second NTFA convention with official support from Hasbro Nordic, now renamed "NordCon" (to avoid copyright problems with the name "Mini-Con") was held in Aalborg, Denmark from 19 June to 20 June 2010. It featured Simon Furman as a guest of honour. In 2011, NordCon and Auto Assembly joined forces to create a new convention called Auto Assembly Europe, which first took place in Uppsala, Sweden, in November 2011.
"Garbage Truck" is a redeco of the same Optimus Prime toy in blue and white, a common coloration for Japanese garbage trucks that bears ends up bearing a coincidental resemblance to the Bot Shots Polar Assault Team Optimus. His stickers now picture his truck mode being loaded with garbage, his truck mode driving around, and the word "cleaning" in both English and Japanese.
This Turbo Change Series Optimus Prime toy is a slight redeco/retool of the Lost Age Series toy. Deco changes include omitting the flame tampos on his legs and shoulder, and added blue pinstripes on the Trailer/Wing Backpack to evoke his Generation 1 toy's trailer. This toy also features some new parts like the screen-accurate forearms, the command deck for the smaller Turbo Change Series toys, and the trailer's adapter. His usual Sword of Judgment is now replaced with a screen-accurate mold that is similar to the Armor Knight toy's sword, and he now features a new Vector Shield piece, which can convert into a battle axe.
The back story of the Transformers on ancient Cybertron is told in Transformers: Defiance. In this story, Starscream returns to Cybertron after encountering an enemy scout ship in the Eshems Nebula. After being repaired for minor damage by Ratchet, Starscream and Ironhide report to Optimus Prime and Megatron. In issue #2, Optimus Prime is ordered by Megatron to counter-attack Cybertron's invaders, but instead, Optimus organizes a resistance to Megatron's decision. In issue #3, Optimus Prime, Jazz, and Prowl break into Megatron's quarters while he is away looking for clues to why he is acting so strangely. What they find is an ancient artifact that Megatron had restored.
Optimus Prime is composed of two parts, his truck cab and his trailer. His new truck cab is reminiscent of the original Optimus Prime truck cab, but is constructed entirely of plastic, lacks vacuum-metalized plastic and has no clear windows. It also transforms differently in that the front of the truck is no longer the robot mode's chest. His chest is now formed out of the truck's cabin rear, styled after his cartoon appearance. He is armed with two long black rifles, based in part upon his cartoon rifle.
He is designed with a removable head, biceps, arms, and legs, all of which use the same clip-peg/hole joint. This means his pieces can be swapped around in any order, as well as swapped with any other Hero Mashers figure... which includes figures from Marvel Comics, Star Wars, and Jurassic World, meaning you can make some pretty freaky combinations.
The all new 2006-2007 Classics line featured characters from the original series in updated forms. Hot Rod (now called Rodimus due to trademark reasons) was in the first wave of Autobots along with Optimus Prime and Bumblebee. Due to most of the Classics lacking visible Autobot and Decepticon insignias, this figure lacks the distinctive Autobot symbol seen on the chest of all other versions of Hot Rod/Rodimus, to which fan companies have responded to with alternative stickers. His vehicle mode is based on an obscure Japanese Supercar, the Dome Zero, manufactured by DOME Co. Ltd in 1978.
The figure would have come in a monochrome version of the standard Henkei! Henkei! Convoy's packaging, still named "Convoy" but now labeled as part of the Gentei! Gentei range of exclusives. Reportedly, this figure was intended as a Wonderfest exclusive, but was canceled because, according too TakaraTomy designer Shogo Hasui, it was too similar to Universe Nemesis Prime. Knockoffs were later made available, so buyers beware!
It should also be mentioned that a few years back, I think around 2009 roughly, TLG started using smaller boxes for the same size sets. It was part of a move to not only save money, but also become greener as a company. Because the sets now take up less physical space on the shelf, and boxes with the same number of pieces appear smaller than sets from previous years, it could also contribute to the perception that you are getting less for your money today. In reality they are one and the same product.
In "Sick Mind", Optimus is infected with the life-threatening Cybonic plague, prompting Arcee and Bumblebee to infiltrate the Nemesis to find a cure for the virus Megatron himself created. As Optimus grows weaker, he learns of Megatron's survival of the space bridge explosion. It was Bumblebee entering Megatron's mind via cortical psychic patch and retrieving the cure that saved Optimus. In the next episode, "Out of His Head", Optimus is, surprisingly, saved by the revived Megatron when he intercepted Starscream's attempted nosedive to kill him.